Noah Sends Out a Dove

At various times as I have been working at my computer the message will come on the screen saying “the operating system has experienced a serious error.” After rebooting - the system will return to normal and I will be able to continue what I am doing. In a sense, this … More

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In some minds the Ark seems small. Yet, until the 1800’s the Ark was the largest boat ever built. The ark had 100,000 feet of floor space. If you can picture in your mind a railway box car, imagine 522 of them fitting into the Ark - that’s a lot of box cars but only about 146, or 28% would be needed to hold the animals. This left 70% of the Ark free to store food, etc.

Noah is working to determine the hospitality of the world (vv 6-12). Noah’s agents are  two very different birds. The raven is useless, the dove is extremely useful. One day Noah opened the window of the ark, which he had made, and sent out a raven which didn’t come back but flew back and forth until the waters dried up (vv. 6-7). Then he sent out a dove, which naturally inhabits the valleys, but it soon came flying to Noah and the safety of the ark (vv. 8-9).

A week later Noah sent the dove out again and this time she came flying back with an olive branch in her mouth which was welcome proof that the valleys were beginning to clear (vv. 10-11). Noah knew  that the ground was drying up. A week later he sent the dove again but this time she didn’t return unto him any more (v. 12). From the dove and the raven we can learn a spiritual lesson. The dove, a clean white bird, acceptable to the Lord, representative of the Holy Spirit (John 1:32) stands in a purposeful contrast against the unclean, unacceptable, black raven.

The ark rested in the mountains of Ararat 150 days after the rains began. Assyrian records may identify such a name in Armenia of eastern Turkey, but the precise location remains unknown. After it was clear that the earth was suitable for habitation, the eight people and all the animals left the ark. When the ark came to rest on Ararat, this was more than a physical landing on dry ground. It was a new beginning; the world was clean and at rest. Five months after the flood commenced to recede the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat (v. 4). It took considerable time for the waters to recede and for the ground to be dry enough to walk on. It was a little more than a year that Noah and his family spent on the ark. At the command of the Lord they gladly (I am certain) disembarked.          

Application

II Corinthians 5:17 says,"If any man be in Christ he is a new creature.” I am so thankful for the new beginning that has taken place in my life and in each member of our family?

Genesis 8:6-12 (English Standard Version)

At the end of forty days Noah opened the window of the ark that he had made and sent forth a raven. It went to and fro until the waters were dried up from the earth. Then he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground. But the dove found no place to set her foot, and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and took her and brought her into the ark with him. He waited another seven days, and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark. And the dove came back to him in the evening, and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth. Then he waited another seven days and sent forth the dove, and she did not return to him anymore.

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